Pandemic Pride Photo and Video Project with Belle Ancell
Belle Ancell is a queer identified professional portrait photographer in Vancouver Canada. She is celebrated for her ten year ‘Unveiled’ photo project, honouring the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, which will be published in book form in 2020. For our 2020 Pride in a global pandemic she has been working on a Pandemic Pride video and photo project.
I asked her about her project recently – “Pandemic Pride is a photo project to celebrate Pandemic Pride 2020. The Vancouver Pride Society states that ‘Pride can’t be cancelled, only Re-imagined’. I wanted to do a photo project to document LGBT2+ folks during this bizarre time in our LGBTQ2+ History. Folks were asked to pose in their most fabulous Pride attire and wear a mask. A short video was made asking them how they usually celebrate Pride and how they’re celebrating Pandemic Pride.”
The idea came during the isolation phase of covid when she had to close her photography business. “I wanted to do a photo project as I didn’t have an artistic outlet. I didn’t see any documentation of LGBT2+ folks around the Pandemic and I thought it was important as this is (hopefully) a once in a 100 years event. I guess I wanted to document that we are resilient and that Pride is a feeling and we don’t need a specific day once a year to be Proud of who we are. I just felt compelled and I wish I had been able to photograph more people”
Photo of Belle by Ray McEachern
Story by Sophia Kelly